In a major development, four Supreme Court judges recused themselves from suo moto hearing on the case related to elections in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
According to the details, a nine-member larger bench was formed to hear the suo motu proceedings regarding the delay in the announcement of a date for elections in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
The nine-member bench included Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Umar Ata Bandial, Justice Ijazul Ahsan, Justice Syed Mansoor Ali Shah, Justice Munib Akhtar, Justice Yahya Afridi, Justice Sayyed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi, Justice Jamal Khan Mandokhail, Justice Muhammad Ali Mazhar, and Justice Athar Minallah.
However, Justice Ijaz Ul Ahsan, Justice Sayyed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi, Justice Athar Minallah, and Justice Yahya Afridi recused themselves from hearing the case.
Read more: It’s hard for any democrat to dissolve an assembly: Punjab governor
Pertinent to mention that the government on Friday raised an objection over the two judges of the Supreme Court, hearing the case pertaining to the delay in the election date announcements for Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Assemblies.
After the recusal of the four judges, a five-member bench including CJP Justice Umar Ata Bandial, Justice Jamal Mandokhel, Justice Mansoor Ali Shah, Justice Munib Akhtar and Justice Muhammad Ali Shah heard the case. The court will again hear the suo motu case at 9:30 am tomorrow (Tuesday) and try to wrap it up.
9 Member Bench reconstituted in Punjab / KP Suo Moto Hearing today.
Justice Aijaz Ul Ahsan& Justice Naqvi along with 2 other judges recused from hearing the case.The CJ just announced in court that after recusal by four judges remaining 5 judges will continue hearing the matter
— Asad Kharal (@AsadKharal) February 27, 2023
Last week, President Dr Arif Alvi has announced to hold polls in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab on April 9. After a delay from the Election Commission of Pakistan over the announcement of the election date, the President made the announcement of the election date under Section 57 (1) of the Elections Act, 2017.
The move drew sharp criticism from his political opponents, who accused him of acting like a PTI worker. Meanwhile, the ECP said it would announce the poll schedule only after the “competent authority” fixes the date.
Read more: President Alvi announces date for Punjab, KP elections